Environmentalists and social activists are calling for urgent action to eradicate plastic and combat plastic pollution in Hyderabad on World Environment Day. They are concerned about the continued presence of plastic bottles discarded on roadsides and polythene bags clogging drains, indicating a lack of proper waste segregation. The Telangana Pollution Control Board reports that Hyderabad produces 450 to 500 tonnes of plastic daily. Despite the ban on plastic bags with thicknesses below 50 microns, these bags continue to be available. Environmentalists are urging the government to enhance awareness campaigns and establish more recycling facilities to tackle the problem effectively.
Abhishek, a solid waste management volunteer, believes that the proper segregation of waste is lacking, and the State government has not streamlined the process effectively. To ensure that waste is segregated properly, it would be beneficial for the government to introduce initiatives that incentivise residents. For example, offering rewards such as adjustments in electricity or water bills in exchange for providing dry waste would encourage consumer participation.
Manoj Vidiyala, Co-founder of Dha3RNGO, says that single-use plastic is still prevalent in the market despite the ban on plastic bags with thicknesses below 50 microns in India. The primary reason for this continued presence is the lack of awareness among people. It is the responsibility of the government to halt the production of single-use plastic, but unfortunately, plastic industries continue to thrive. While some NGOs conduct awareness campaigns, it is crucial for the state government to take the lead in spreading awareness to a larger audience.
Madhulika Choudary, environmentalist and founder of Dhruvansh, suggests that the State government should establish recycling units within the city to further tackle the problem. Currently, there is only one located in Medchal. Another crucial aspect is the need for proper waste segregation. If the State government emphasises the importance of vermicompost, it will contribute to the elimination of plastic waste effectively.
In conclusion, the government needs to take strict action against violators, enhance awareness campaigns, establish more recycling facilities, incentivise residents, and emphasise the importance of proper waste segregation to combat plastic pollution effectively.